Delays for five months as 40-year-old inner ring road gets revamp
MOTORISTS are being warned to expect delays for about five months on Derby's inner ring road as £1.2 million of maintenance work takes place.
The scheme, being carried out by contractor Bam Nuttall, will see improvements and repairs made to bridges, lighting and barriers on the St Alkmund's Way section.
A city council spokeswoman said that lane closures would be in place in both directions from Monday, January 21, until the work ends in June.
She said: "Motorists should expect delays heading towards the A52 and exiting the city via King Street."
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She added that the road would be fully closed occasionally during off-peak night-time hours. Diversions would be put in place.
She said the work was necessary to maintain the well-used route, which was built in the early 1970s. None of it was "emergency" work.
She said: "Derby's inner ring road now requires improvements to keep the city moving.
"The inner ring road sees almost 60,000 vehicles over the course of an average weekday and, at peak periods, over 4,000 cars, buses and goods vehicles travel on this section of road every hour.
"This high level of traffic has taken its toll and essential maintenance is needed."
Three bridges, which carry the road over Phoenix Street, Sowter Road and the River Derwent, will have "extensive maintenance work".
Brighter lighting will be installed to make it safer for drivers and 600m of barriers in the central reservation that have "reached the end of their life" will be replaced.
Taxi driver Mohammed Yasin, of Derby-based 75 Taxis, said he was concerned about the delays in King Street as it already suffered from congestion.
But he added that it was perhaps the best time for the work, in the months after extra traffic from the new year sales has died down.
He said: "Every time I pass by King Street in the evening, it is full of traffic.
"The problem is that, if there are delays there, it can mean delays for half the city centre."
Councillor Ranjit Banwait, cabinet member for neighbourhoods and street pride, said the work was "crucial to Derby's highways infrastructure".
He said: "We have to maintain it so we can keep our economy moving.
"This part of our inner ring road is now more than 40 years old and is in need of improvements to ensure Derby remains connected.
"I would ask drivers to start planning ahead for their journeys into the city centre, to either leave additional time to reach their destination or consider alternative routes."